If there’s someone you’d like to get to know a little better, Bankstone News can warmly recommend taking them to the Intu Trafford Centre, conveniently located in quaintly named Dumplington, Greater Manchester, the largest shopping centre in Western Europe by gross leasable area!

It was to this very spot, this Friday just passed, that Thorneycrofts Solicitors took a handpicked bunch of Bankstonians with whom they regularly have the dubious pleasure of dealing, for what is known in the trade as a “get to know you” evening.

The proceedings kicked off with a little retail therapy for those who arrived in time. Bankstone senior honcho Victor Tysler reports having spotted a number of perfume-sized yellow Selfridges bags, suggesting that Bankstone News might take this detail as the cue for a digression into the life of TV’s Mr (Harry Gordon) Selfridge, into which we should be sure to drop the story of his having ended his days in Bournemouth with a pair of nymphomaniac twins.

Normally happy to do Mr T’s bidding in all things (decency and probity allowing), Bankstone News is regretfully obliged to report that, despite having once engaged in a menage of some duration, of a presumedly erotic nature, with the famous “Dolly Sisters”, Selfridge is generally understood to have ended his days alone and penniless in Putney, and the Dolly Sisters were Hungarian not Russian.

But let us return, without further dilly-dalliance, to the Intu Trafford Centre, where, by early evening last Friday, assorted Bankstonites and Thorneycroftians were tucking in to what Mr Tyson refers to as “a hearty repast of fizzy wine and finger food”.

Soon afterwards, the self same fingers so recently employed for foodly purposes, were rudely thrust within the inner recesses of graphite-cored urethane balls with the aim of flinging said balls, with seemingly careless abandon, in the general direction of a succession of mechanically delivered clusters of skittles, along rumbling lanes of mineral-oiled maple and pine.

Poor Vic found himself the sole male member in a team otherwise composed of four attractive young female Thorneycroftians. Nothing fazed, he proudly reports opening his account with “a strike”. Thereafter, he recounts ruefully, the reloading mechanism for balls “went into permanent shutdown”, obliging everyone to repair to the dogdems whilst repairs to the ailing ball system were undertaken.

“A cracking good time was had by all” he sums up fondly. “Lasting memories” were created, he notes, adding cryptically that certain muscles were used that had not been used in a long time, if indeed ever, in some cases. “Thank goodness we had the whole weekend to recover” Tysloe jokes.

Pictured below is Bankstone’s Allan “Pops” Popplethwaite treating Thorneycroft receptionist Lynn to the ride of her life. So greatly did Al enjoy the evening that it was only the following morning he realised that he had worn home a pair of those insanely comfortable flat-soled rental bowling shoes.

Deeming it imprudent to return so soon the scene of his various half-recollected crimes, Pops is hoping to find a third-party volunteer to undertake the recovery of his own trademark Gucinari Rodrigo cuban heel winkle pickers.



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